Showing posts from September, 2017

Shitty Kidding

My oldest daughter couldn’t stop crying the other day, which was surprising. She doesn’t cry nearly as much as she used to. Broadly speaking, this is a good thing. The sound of your child’s inconsolable sobs can cause physical pain; a sonic cocktail of fingernails on a chalkboard, an injured dog, and Richard Harris’s “MacArthur Park.” As a young child she cried often. Rarely did I understand the reason. Even more rarely could I get her to stop. When she wailed, I would experience a gauntlet of emotions, from sad to befuddled to frustrated to enraged. Too often, I heard myself venting to an imaginary parenting coach, “She’s crying for no fucking reason!” Sometime during my parental maturation process, I realized that no one cries for no reason, least of all a child. The failure to understand your children is probably not a failure at all. And if it is, it certainly isn’t a failure on their part. A child’s job isn’t to make itself understood. In fact, I’m beginning to bel